Mavericks’ win over Bulls reveals 1 thing Jason Kidd must avoid down final stretch

On Monday night, the Dallas Mavericks extended their winning streak to three games with a 127-92 victory over the Chicago Bulls on the road.

How Mavericks' Daniel Gafford can raise the ceiling of rookie Dereck Lively  II

The Mavs dominated this game from the opening tip to the final buzzer, and the main story of the night was the domination of Dallas’ two big men.

Dereck Lively II and Daniel Gafford were excellent, as the duo combined for 42 points.

Mavericks’ win over Bulls reveals 1 thing Jason Kidd must avoid down final stretch

Gafford’s consecutive field goals made streak continued while Lively II had one of the best games of his career. Lively II finished with 22 points (a new career-high) and was excellent in all facets of the game. He was dunking everything with force, and the Mavs now have two bigs who dunk everything in the paint – a huge advantage that helps build momentum and energy within the team and the crowd (when at home).

The performance of Dallas’ bigs was excellent tonight, and it also showcased one thing that Mavs head coach Jason Kidd must avoid down the stretch. Over the stretch where Dallas was dropping games, Kidd utilized small-ball lineups often with Maxi Kleber at the five.

This came at the expense of Gafford’s minutes, and against the Boston Celtics, he only played six minutes. This was likely due to the unique matchup that the Celtics impose, but that doesn’t mean that Kidd should completely go away from playing him.

Games like tonight show why Lively II and Gafford must be key pieces of the rotation every night, regardless of the matchup. Kidd should force teams to play their style of game rather than always adhering to their opponent’s style of play.

Playing small ball sometimes is obviously important, and Kleber is fully capable of playing the five, but Lively II and Gafford are good enough for Dallas to force other teams to play their game. Both players can take over a game with their interior scoring and presence on the glass, and Kidd can’t overlook that.

Dallas will have a chance to extend their winning streak to four games on Wednesday night against the Golden State Warriors.

For all the latest on Jason Kidd, Dereck Lively II, Daniel Gafford, and the Dallas Mavericks this season, stay tuned

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